The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Hola amigos! It’s been way too long! I finally got to squeeze in some baking therapy during this much needed spring break..and since the sis had a speech on why chocolate chip cookies are worth the calories..I made a quick 2 dozen so that she’d get her A, no questions asked :p. If you go on Pinterest these days, everyone has their sworn-by “best chocolate chip cookie recipe” out there. There are people out there who have had the spare time to test out using butter versus oil, more white sugar versus brown sugar, chilled versus unchilled dough, melted versus room temperature butter, etc. But I don’t got that kind of time..and plus if someone else has done it, then what’s the point right? 

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Well, this recipe is actually a classic…it comes from the New York Times Cookbook (you know those things that people used to use before the Internet and Pinterest). I’ve seen it floating around everywhere, and I have to say, it’s one of the BEST C3 recipes I’ve had. The recipe called for bread flour and pastry flour but I didn’t want to spend the extra money for just one recipe, so I just used normal AP flour. I also added a good amount of some pretty coarse sea salt (which gives a good contrast to the chocolate) and a teaspoon of some vanilla paste (in addition to the regular vanilla extract). The last and final tip is to make sure you CHILL the dough for at least overnight if not longer. It will make it taste better, I promise. Please enjoy the pictures featuring the newest member of our family, Sumo. Sorry buddy, but you’ll never get to enjoy chocolate chip cookies..ever. IMG_1522 IMG_1521 IMG_1519 IMG_1517 IMG_1516 IMG_1506 IMG_1524
INGREDIENTS:
3 2/3 cup of all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
2 1/2 sticks (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) light brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon of vanilla paste (optional)
1 1/4 pounds bittersweet chocolate,  at least 60 percent cacao content (I used a mixture of Dark Chocolate morsels (Nestle), Trader Joe’s Bittersweet Chocolate Pound Plus bar (chopped), and Ghiradelli’s Semi-Sweet Chocolate Bar (chopped)) You can use whatever combination and quantity you like!
sea salt, for sprinkling over cookie dough prior to baking
DIRECTIONS:
  1. Sift flours, baking powder, baking soda, 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt into a large bowl; set aside.
  2. Using a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  4. Stir in the vanilla.
  5. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds (I did about 20 to 30 seconds).
  6. Drop chocolate pieces in and incorporate them without breaking them.
  7. Scoop 2 tablespoon large balls and flatten the tops into cylinder shaped dough balls.
  8. Wrap in plastic (or place dough in an airtight container) and refrigerate for at least overnight, preferably 24 to 36 hours. Dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours.
  9. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat; set aside.
  10. Place cookies at least 1.5 inches apart to prevent cookies from touching when they bake.
  11.  Transfer baking mat or parchment paper to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then slip cookies onto another rack to cool a bit more. Repeat with remaining dough, or reserve dough, refrigerated, for baking remaining batches the next day. Eat warm, with a large glass of milk.
Recipe from the New York Times, adapted from Jacques Torres
Reflections on 1/2 Way
I can’t believe it’s been two years since I started dental school! What a journey it’s been, filled with a lot of stripping away of idols, breaking me apart and letting the Lord put me back together, sanctify, and mold me into His image. Lately, I’ve been reminded of how good God is and has been, and how forgetful I am through reading the book of Deuteronomy. These Israelites… man, they needed a lot of rules and a lot of repetitiveness. Basically, they failed God a lot and He had to keep reminding them how holy He was and how much He would bless them if they loved Him and obeyed Him, and how much they would suffer if they didn’t. God had this amazing Promised Land ahead of them, a land flowing with milk and honey, yet they got distracted too easily, ended up meandering about in the wilderness, started complaining about food or water and wishing they’d be back in Egypt, criticized their leader, Moses,  and set up idols because they felt the need to worship something…just to name a few. It’s been so convicting to read through this book because it’s totally me! God even warned the people in Deuteronomy 8 not to forget how the Lord led them through the wilderness and gave them manna and water and never let their sandals or clothes wear down. This would especially be tempting when they reached the Promised Land and achieved wealth and would naturally take credit for their success (UHM..me all the time!) . It’s truly mind-blowing to see how the Lord still promised to love His chosen people, even though He knew they would keep on failing Him. Even more, I am thankful that I live now, where I have Jesus Christ who paid in full for all the debt I have racked up. Every time I fall short of God’s glory, I tend to put myself down, feeling like I’ve failed God. It’s almost like I’m still trying to earn His grace sometimes! I have to remind myself that He authored and will continuing perfecting my faith, that nothing can separate me from His love, and that He chose me before the foundations of this world (say whatttt).

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:1-2)

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. (Ephesians 1:3-4)

This past school year has been the roughest yet, but I’ve been able to find sweet comfort in His Word, in prayer, in fellowship with other believers, and in communion with the Holy Spirit. I’ve learned that trials and suffering bring us closer to God, sometimes even knocks us on the head a little when we get distracted and rely on ourselves, and is a necessary and inevitable part of living in this fallen world. I’ve been able to feel a burden for those in my life who are living for themselves (and myself, at times..), and have not yet found and been rescued by Jesus, the truest and greatest hope in this crooked and twisted generation. I’m still really working on how to be bolder in my faith and unashamed of this precious Gospel. My prayer this past semester was to learn how to glorify God every day as a dentist and I’ve had some pretty cool experiences here and there that have pointed to Him, even through just small conversations about God with classmates or patients, and through bigger things like missions trips to Guatemala!

“I was made for Jesus so my deepest joys are found in being in relationship with Him.”

This past year, I’ve seen how brokenness lies on every corner, in every place we enter, in the deepest crevices of our flawed and sinful hearts. I’ve also seen how Jesus can fix all those things. He can redeem, He can heal and He can overcome. The Gospel has become more real than ever, with the help of the Bible and some pretty solid teaching.
Being able to serve with Lighthouse children, youth, women and CDMA has been the best escape from second year Sim Lab nightmares. Though at times, I feel exhausted or like I just don’t have enough energy to share my struggles, God reminds me of His love through a sister’s hug, a child’s silly comment, or a middle-schoolers honesty in small group. I see God through so much of His creation and I’m so excited for the opportunities that He has placed in my life to serve Him. I’m looking forward to more ways to look back at His faithfulness during these next two years!

He truly is “able to do immeasurably more than all we ever ask or imagine” (Ephesians 3:20). 

May this last half be filled with more of Him and less of me.
“And you shall remember the whole way that the Lord your God has led you these forty years in the wilderness, that he might humble you, testing you to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not. And he humbled you and let you hunger and fed you with manna, which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that he might make you know that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word[a] that comes from the mouth of the Lord. Your clothing did not wear out on you and your foot did not swell these forty years. 5 Know then in your heart that, as a man disciplines his son, the Lord your God disciplines you. So you shall keep the commandments of the Lord your God by walking in his ways and by fearing him. For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and springs, flowing out in the valleys and hills, a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive trees and honey, a land in which you will eat bread without scarcity, in which you will lack nothing, a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills you can dig copper. 10 And you shall eat and be full, and you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land he has given you.
11 Take care lest you forget the Lord your God by not keeping his commandments and his rules and his statutes, which I command you today, 12 lest, when you have eaten and are full and have built good houses and live in them, 13 and when your herds and flocks multiply and your silver and gold is multiplied and all that you have is multiplied, 14 then your heart be lifted up, and you forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery, 15 who led you through the great and terrifying wilderness, with its fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty ground where there was no water, who brought you water out of the flinty rock, 16 who fed you in the wilderness with manna that your fathers did not know, that he might humble you and test you, to do you good in the end. 17 Beware lest you say in your heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth.’ 18 You shall remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth, that he may confirm his covenant that he swore to your fathers, as it is this day. 19 And if you forget the Lord your God and go after other gods and serve them and worship them, I solemnly warn you today that you shall surely perish. 20 Like the nations that the Lord makes to perish before you, so shall you perish, because you would not obey the voice of the Lord your God. -Deuteronomy 8:2-20 (ESV)
Through His grace,
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